Civil War News
For People With An Active Interest in the Civil War Today

Gen. George Sears Greene, Forgotten Hero
By Kathryn Jorgensen
- May 2002 - WARWICK, R.I.

A far-flung band of preservationists, including a photographer, a web master and a writer, is determined to see that Gen. George Sears Greene gets the respect he deserves — starting with his neglected and vandalized gravesite.

Greene was a West Point graduate and engineer from Warwick who led the 3rd Brigade of New Yorkers on Culp’s Hill the second day at Gettysburg. Because he had ordered construction of breast-works earlier in the day his lone brigade successfully held off Confederate attacks and saved the Federal right flank.

He was born in 1801 and was one of the oldest field commanders in the war. He served with New York, rather than Rhode Island troops, because he had been working in New York at the time he joined, as a colonel in the 60th New York.
As visitors to the www.geocities.com/greenehemp/ web site will see, the Greene family cemetery where the general was buried in 1899 is a mess.

Web site http://johnbhood.tripod.com/gengreene/default.htm, "Hero No More," is devoted to Greene. And at www.militaryhistoryonline.com people can sign a electronic petition to have the cemetery and gravesite maintained.
Except for one person who lives about 40 minutes from Warwick, the prime movers are hundreds of miles away.
Paul Hemphill is the nearby photographer who documented the cemetery’s condition and put the pictures on the geocities web site listed above.

Bruce Bump of Erie, Pa., is web master of the Hero No More site. He says he created it on behalf of some concerned members of the Military History Online group. He’s also created the www.geocities.com/buffington_isle site which included a petition for preservation of that Ohio battlefield.

David W. Palmer of Philadelphia, whose biography of Greene is under review for publication, was successful in getting a letter to the editor published in the Warwick Beacon. In it he urged that Green’s home, which is for sale, be preserved.

He since found a 1900 deed for the house to be made into a museum, which was not done.

Also helping the effort is Les Rolston of Warwick who has tried in the past to get a group to take re-sponsibility for the cemetery, and Greene great-granddaughter Joan Pierpont. The only official who has responded to the preservationists is the Warwick mayor. The state Sons of Union Veterans said they did not have funds or manpower, according to Bump.

Despite the history of past squabbling between preservation groups, Bump said his informal group is trying to find solutions. Right now they’re thinking of Scouts who could earn badges and perform community service at the cemetery
Palmer thinks Greene has been forgotten in Rhode Island because of "ignorance, wrong information and little self-promotion by the General himself."

Bump says, "We are not doing this for personal recognition, we are doing this because it is the right thing to do as patriots who believe in America’s past, and for future generations of Americans to come."

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